1Stephanie D Chao, Department of Surgery, Stanford University School of Medicine, Asian Liver Center at Stanford University, School of Medicine, Palo Alto, CA 94304, United States.
To investigate physicians' knowledge including chronic hepatitis B (CHB) diagnosis, screening, and management in various stages of their training.
A voluntary 20-question survey was administered in Santa Clara County, CA where Asian and Pacific Islanders (API) account for a third of the population. Among the 219 physician participants, there were 63 interns, 60 second-year residents, 26 chief residents and 70 attending physicians. The survey asked questions regarding respondents' demographics, general hepatitis B virus knowledge questions (i.e., transmission, prevalence, diagnostic testing, prevention, and treatment options), as well as, self-reported practice behavior and confidence in knowledge.
Knowledge about screening and managing patients with CHB was poor: only 24% identified the correct tests to screen for CHB, 13% knew the next steps for patients testing positive for CHB, 18% knew the high prevalence rate among API, and 31% knew how to screen for liver cancer. Wald chi-square analysis determined the effect of training level on knowledge; in all cases except for knowledge of liver cancer screening (P = 0.0032), knowledge did not significantly increase with length in residency training or completion of residency.
Even in a high-risk region, both medical school and residency training have not adequately prepared physicians in the screening and management of CHB.